Camp Ripley Ammunitions Supply Point receives above average rating in recent inspection

June 4, 2021 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) – An ammunition review team from the Defense Ammunition Center recently visited Camp Ripley to conduct a Department of the Army inspection of the Ammunition Supply Point. During the three-day inspection, the team determined that Camp Ripley is above the average in compliance for the National Guard. Camp Ripley… Continue reading Camp Ripley Ammunitions Supply Point receives above average rating in recent inspection

Minnesota Army National Guard Military Funeral Honors surpasses 50,000 funerals supported

May 29, 2021 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — Despite a brief slowdown of operations due to COVID-19 last year, the Minnesota Army National Guard’s military funeral honors program saw a significant milestone in March of this year, surpassing 50,000 funerals supported. The Minnesota National Guard Military Funeral Honors program began in 2004 and conducted approximately 300… Continue reading Minnesota Army National Guard Military Funeral Honors surpasses 50,000 funerals supported

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Minnesota National Guard breaks ground on new facilities in New Ulm

May 20, 2021 (NEW ULM, Minnesota) — The Minnesota National Guard broke ground today on a nearly $30 million construction project in New Ulm to build a new Field Maintenance Shop and a new Readiness Center over the next four years. The coordination and vision for the project began a decade ago between the city… Continue reading Minnesota National Guard breaks ground on new facilities in New Ulm

A monument built from kindness, compassion and empathy

Three Minnesota National Guardsmen were honored May 16, 2021, with the dedication of a memorial at the site of a Dec. 5, 2019, helicopter crash that killed three in Kimball, Minnesota. The public memorial honors Chief Warrant Officer 2 James Rogers Jr., Chief Warrant Officer 2 Charles P. Nord and Warrant Officer Candidate Kort M. Plantenberg, all members of Company C, 2-211th General Support Aviation Battalion.

May 19, 2021 (KIMBALL, Minnesota) — The official dedication of the Minnesota Army National Guard Fallen Soldiers Memorial took place May 16, 2021, in Kimball, Minnesota, to honor three Minnesota National Guard Soldiers who were killed Dec. 5, 2019, when a Black Hawk helicopter crashed during a maintenance test flight. Chief Warrant Officer 2 James… Continue reading A monument built from kindness, compassion and empathy

Minnesota National Guard family embraces service

April 30, 2021 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) – Each April, Americans recognize and honor the more than 2 million military children during the Month of the Military Child. For one Minnesota National Guard family, balancing a deployment, State Active Duty and four kids is taxing. “It’s challenging, especially with a dual military family,” said Capt. Angela… Continue reading Minnesota National Guard family embraces service

Airmen First

April 28, 2021 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — As the verdict in the former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin trial was announced, U.S. Air Force Airmen from the 133rd Airlift Wing were staged and ready to secure the Minneapolis Convention Center. The Airmen were just 50 pieces to a 3,000-piece puzzle, activated to support Operation Safety… Continue reading Airmen First

Red Bulls take command of Minnesota National Guard Operation Safety Net efforts

April 17, 2021 (ARDEN HILLS, Minnesota) – The Minnesota National Guard Joint Force Headquarters has transferred control of the Minnesota National Guard’s security efforts for Operation Safety Net to the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division. Operation Safety Net is the public safety response to protect lives and property and ensure the ability for people to… Continue reading Red Bulls take command of Minnesota National Guard Operation Safety Net efforts

Minnesotans, And Croatians, Take On The 2021 Best Warrior Competition

The Minnesota National Guard held the 2021 Best Warrior Competition on a rainy and windy weekend at Camp Ripley recently. After three days of intense competition among 14 Soldiers, Pfc. Ethan Buckner and Cpl. Jakob Ellingson were declared Soldier and Non-Commissioned Officer of the year, respectively.

April 13, 2021 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) — The Minnesota National Guard held the 2021 Best Warrior Competition on a rainy and windy weekend at Camp Ripley recently. After three days of intense competition among 14 Soldiers, Pfc. Ethan Buckner and Cpl. Jakob Ellingson were declared Soldier and Non-Commissioned Officer of the year, respectively. The competition… Continue reading Minnesotans, And Croatians, Take On The 2021 Best Warrior Competition

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133rd Phoenix Raven team supports world-wide missions

U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Lief Christensen, 133rd Security Forces Squadron, Minnesota Air National Guard Phoenix Raven team leader, checks outside after landing in a C-130J Super Hercules at Kaedi Airfield, Mauritania, Feb. 22, 2020. Phoenix Ravens provide additional support for aircraft, cargo and crew in regions requiring increased security. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Kirby Turbak)

April 6, 2021 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — As a kid, U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Andrew Dotas described how he could never have imagined being part of a program like the Phoenix Raven. Dotas values the incredible experiences he has had being part of the 133rd Airlift Wing’s Phoenix Raven team. Dotas’ enthusiasm for the… Continue reading 133rd Phoenix Raven team supports world-wide missions

Father, daughter serve together in Minnesota National Guard

April 5, 2021 (Camp Ripley, Minnesota) — For one family, serving in the Minnesota National Guard is a tradition.Chief Warrant Officer Three Dana Schiller is nearing the end of his 30-year career as his 18-year-olddaughter, Pvt. Sara Schiller, begins her own journey. The Schillers’ both express pride in serving and an appreciation for life and… Continue reading Father, daughter serve together in Minnesota National Guard

A Leadership First for Women in the 175th RTI

From Left to Right: Lt. Col. Brandi DeGier of RTI’s 2nd Battalion (Modular Training), Col. Jason Benson Regimental Commander, Maj. Jolene Carlson, commanding the Regional Training Site – Maintenance, and Lt. Col. Amber Manke of RTI’s 1st Battalion (OCS/WOCS)

March 31, 2021 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) — Lt. Col. Amber Manke assumed command of 1st Battalion, 175th Regiment, Regional Training Institute, March 20, 2021 on Camp Ripley. The inspirational observance of her change of command brought to light a fact that for the first time in regimental history, three women are leading each of the… Continue reading A Leadership First for Women in the 175th RTI

Minnesota National Guard marks one year since first COVID-19 support mission

March 18, 2021 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) – One year ago today, the Minnesota National Guard conducted its first mission to support the state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In the year since, the Minnesota National Guard has participated in one of the longest state responses in its history, one that is still ongoing. On March… Continue reading Minnesota National Guard marks one year since first COVID-19 support mission

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Aviation Support Battalion recognized for safety efforts

March 16, 2021 (ARDEN HILLS, Minnesota) — The 834th Aviation Support Battalion received the 2020 Army Exceptional Organization Safety Award for the battalion level, March 14, 2021, at the Benjamin Franklin Readiness Center in Arden Hills, Minnesota. The battalion was chosen out of seven other nominees by a panel of safety experts and approved by… Continue reading Aviation Support Battalion recognized for safety efforts

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Minnesota Soldier Prepares for Deployment, Looks Back on Career

March 12, 2021 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) —Sgt. First Class Erin Tilford has served with the Minnesota National Guard for 12 years as a Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) Specialist with the 434th Chemical Company based in Hastings, Minnesota. Tilford, originally from Dover, Minnesota, is gearing up to deploy with her unit later this year.… Continue reading Minnesota Soldier Prepares for Deployment, Looks Back on Career

Task Force 1-194 Soldier Runs With The Torch

March 10, 2021 (FORT BLISS, Texas) — Spc. Becca Strangstalien of Baxter, Minnesota, graduated from Advanced Individual Training as a unit supply specialist less than seven months ago. In the short amount of time that she has been back, she’s found herself preparing to deploy and carrying out the duties of a non-commissioned officer as… Continue reading Task Force 1-194 Soldier Runs With The Torch

Learning to Lead

March 2, 2021 (ARDEN HILLS, Minnesota) — The strength of any force is due in part to the strength of its leadership. In the Minnesota National Guard, a growing population of its force and leadership are women. While some serve full-time as service members, some juggle their responsibilities as non-commissioned officers (NCOs) and officers with… Continue reading Learning to Lead

Minnesota National Guard celebrates Black History Month

February 28, 2021 (ARDEN HILLS, Minnesota) — The Minnesota National Guard’s African American/Black Heritage special emphasis council hosted a Black History Month panel, February 26, 2021, at the 34th Infantry Division Headquarters in Arden Hills, Minnesota. The panel featured six current and former members of the Minnesota National Guard, representing officer and enlisted, male and… Continue reading Minnesota National Guard celebrates Black History Month

Minnesota National Guard vaccinates recruiters to help keep schools safe

A Minnesota National Guard recruiter receives his second COVID-19 vaccination, February 25, 2021, in Cottage Grove, Minnesota. Recruiters are one of several groups in the Minnesota National Guard prioritized to receive the vaccine due to their active role in the local community. (Minnesota National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Blair Heusdens)

February 26, 2021 (MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota) — Minnesota National Guard recruiters play an important role in their communities, volunteering with local organizations and working in local schools. As the COVID-19 pandemic has progressed, the Minnesota National Guard continues to find creative solutions to remain connected to Minnesota’s youth and communities. “Our recruiters are active in Minnesota… Continue reading Minnesota National Guard vaccinates recruiters to help keep schools safe

Recruiting for Tomorrow

February 25, 2021 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — Air Force Master Sgt. Rodney Gattis grew up in California, served on Active Duty, and found his way to the Minnesota National Guard five years ago where he now serves as the Recruiting Flight Chief for the 133rd Airlift Wing. Although many members of the Minnesota National Guard… Continue reading Recruiting for Tomorrow

Minnesota Guard Biathlon Team Favorite for Championship Win

David Daley from the Wisconsin National Guard and Derek Lindberg from the Minnesota National Guard shoot during the Chief of the National Guard Bureau Biathlon Championships Pursuit Race, February 23, 2021 at Camp Ripley. The biathlon is a winter sport that combines cross-country skiing and rifle shooting. (Minnesota National Guard Photo by Sgt. Mahsima Alkamooneh)

February 24, 2021 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) — Several members of the Minnesota National Guard Biathlon Team are competing in the 15 kilometer Patrol Race Feb. 25, 2021at 10:00 a.m. on Camp Ripley’s biathlon course. Teams consisting of three shooters and a patrol leader ski a 15K course as a group with each member shooting from… Continue reading Minnesota Guard Biathlon Team Favorite for Championship Win

Soldier finds opportunity, builds relationships in Minnesota National Guard

Spc. Romeo Hall, Automated Logistics Specialist with G Co 134th BSB, poses for a photo near his office at the Consolidated Maintenance Activity- South (CMA-S) located on Camp Ripley, Minnesota. Hall believes it is important to celebrate culture and heritage.

February 22, 2021 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) — Minnesota National Guard strives to be a diverse organization. For one Soldier, the diversity surrounding him is his favorite part about serving as an Automated Logistics Specialist with G Company, 134th Brigade Support Battalion at Camp Ripley’s Consolidated Maintenance Activity-South. “People had their established relationships,” said Spc. Romeo… Continue reading Soldier finds opportunity, builds relationships in Minnesota National Guard

African-Born Minnesota Guardsman reminisces on journey to the United States

Spc. Augustine Neto whlie deployed to the Horn of Africa, Sept. 18, 2020. (Minnesota National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Sirrina Martinez)

February 14, 2021 (DJIBOUTI) — The moment Augustine Neto landed at John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens, New York, he knew he was far from the tropical and warm climate of his birth home in Nairobi, Kenya. It was January 2011 and the dead of winter, and his connecting flight to Tampa, where he… Continue reading African-Born Minnesota Guardsman reminisces on journey to the United States

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Minnesota National Guard officer reflects on Black History Month

February 10, 2021 (ARDEN HILLS, Minnesota) — Growing up, Capt. Takeisha Hunt was not afraid to set lofty goals. She wanted to be the first in her family to graduate college, and she wanted to join the military. In 2011, she crossed the first one off the list after graduating from college. Less than a… Continue reading Minnesota National Guard officer reflects on Black History Month

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St. Cloud-based aviation unit honored prior to deployment

February 8, 2021 (ST. CLOUD, Minnesota) — Soldiers from the Minnesota National Guard’s St. Cloud-based B Company, 1-171st General Support Aviation Battalion participated in a deployment ceremony, February 8, 2021, prior to departing for a nine-month deployment in support of Operation Spartan Shield and Operation Inherent Resolve. “Your unit is the most valuable asset to… Continue reading St. Cloud-based aviation unit honored prior to deployment

Deployment to Africa helps first-generation American understand family’s sacrifice

February 5, 2021 (DJIBOUTI) — Abdirahman Abdalla was around seven years old when he went to his mother’s first-cousin’s wedding in Rochester, Minnesota. It was a sunny July day, and around 30-40 close family and friends gathered in his cousin’s home to celebrate the union. Clad in whites and creams with reddish-orange stripes, men wore… Continue reading Deployment to Africa helps first-generation American understand family’s sacrifice

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Minnesota National Guard supports state vaccination efforts

February 3, 2021 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — The Minnesota National Guard supported the State of Minnesota and the Minnesota Department of Health by providing assistance at 10 community vaccination sites across the state of Minnesota during the last two weeks of January. More than 100 Soldiers and Airmen participated in the vaccination process by providing… Continue reading Minnesota National Guard supports state vaccination efforts

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Minnesota National Guard stands up new logistics units

January 30, 2021 (BLOOMINGTON, Minnesota) — The lifeblood of the U.S. Army and its remarkable capacity to successfully accomplish a wide range of global missions remains its swift and coordinated control and execution of logistics functions. Without bullets, water and fuel, Soldiers can only accomplish so much. And, of course, for sustained operations, food, shelter… Continue reading Minnesota National Guard stands up new logistics units

Renewable energy initiatives result in savings for Minnesota National Guard

January 29, 2021 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — According to an old Scottish proverb, the best-laid plans often go awry. Fortunately that saying does not apply to the Minnesota National Guard’s 30 year plan for sustainability. The initiative was developed in March 2015 in response to President Barack Obama’s Executive Order 13693, “Planning for Federal Sustainability… Continue reading Renewable energy initiatives result in savings for Minnesota National Guard

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Aviation headquarters transitions to new location

January 28, 2021 (INVER GROVE HEIGHTS, Minnesota) — Soldiers with the 34th Expeditionary Combat Aviation Brigade (34th ECAB) are transitioning their headquarters unit from the Army Aviation Support Facility #1 (AASF#1) in St. Paul, Minnesota, to the Inver Grove Heights armory as part of a longstanding plan to move the unit into a more functional building.… Continue reading Aviation headquarters transitions to new location

State bonding funds will aid in renovations to four Minnesota armories

Mr. Don Kerr, Executive Director at Minnesota Department of Military Affairs, shares information to the Minnesota Senate Bonding Committee during a visit to Camp Ripley Jan. 16, 2018.

January 27, 2021 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — Minnesota’s 2020 Bonding Bill, passed by the State Legislature and signed into law by Governor Walz in October 2020, included nearly $12 million for the Minnesota Department of Military Affairs. The funding is for renovations to four Minnesota armories to improve functionality, better accommodate the units assigned and… Continue reading State bonding funds will aid in renovations to four Minnesota armories

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148th Fighter Wing Airmen feed the troops during Presidential Inauguration

January 23, 2021 (WASHINGTON, D.C.) — Prior to January 6th, 2021 eight Services Specialists from the 148th Fighter Wing, Minnesota Air National Guard were already prepared to support the 59th Presidential Inauguration.  The Airmen planned to serve up 2,500 National Guard service members daily out of a mobile Single Pallet Expeditionary Kitchen, or SPEK kitchen.  SPEK kitchens… Continue reading 148th Fighter Wing Airmen feed the troops during Presidential Inauguration

Minnesota Guardsmen provide support to 59th Presidential Inauguration

A U.S. Soldier with the 851st Vertical Engineer Company takes part in training with his unit on Jan. 19, 2021, as part of security efforts in the lead up to the 59th Presidential Inauguration in Washington, D.C.. At least 25,000 National Guard men and women have been authorized to conduct security, communication and logistical missions in support to federal and District authorities leading up and through the 59th Presidential Inauguration (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Pfc. Jorden Newbanks).

January 22, 2021 (Washington, D.C.) — Nearly 750 Minnesota National Guard Soldiers and Airmen answered the call to support local and federal law enforcement agencies in the security of the 59th Presidential Inauguration earlier this week. “Last week, I saw all the Guardsmen coming out here [Washington, D.C.] from different states and I said to… Continue reading Minnesota Guardsmen provide support to 59th Presidential Inauguration

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Celebrating 100 Years of Air Guard Aviation

U.S. Army Capt. Raymond S. Miller, left, Lt. Col. W.C. Garis, center, and Gen. Walter Rhinow pose for a photograph in Falcon Heights, Minn., Sept. 26, 1921. Miller, Garis, and Walter flew to Washington D.C. to lobby for aviation units. (Courtesy photo submitted by the Minnesota Air National Guard Historical Foundation)

January 18, 2021 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — On Jan. 17, 2021, the 133rd Airlift Wing celebrated their 100th anniversary. A century ago, they became the first federally-recognized Air National Guard unit in the nation. The origins of the 133rd Airlift Wing are traced back to the founding unit, the 109th Observation Squadron, known as the… Continue reading Celebrating 100 Years of Air Guard Aviation

Millions invested to modernize National Guard facility in St. Cloud

January 12, 2021 (ST. CLOUD, Minnesota) — The Minnesota National Guard is modernizing its facilities in order to support the National Defense Strategy. The U.S. Army’s Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville insists the Army must modernize in order to overmatch its competitors. In an effort to keep pace with the Army and Air Force,… Continue reading Millions invested to modernize National Guard facility in St. Cloud

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Final Battle Damaged F-16 Returns to 148th Fighter Wing

January 4, 2021 (DULUTH, Minnesota) — In May of 2018, a severe windstorm blew through the 407th Air Expeditionary Group, Ahmad al-Jaber Air Base, Kuwait while personnel from the 179th Air Expeditionary Squadron were evacuated to their quarters. 91-mile per hour straight-line winds collapsed sunshades onto seven F-16 fighter aircraft assigned to the 148th Fighter… Continue reading Final Battle Damaged F-16 Returns to 148th Fighter Wing

Year in Review Part 3 of 3: Partnerships enable Guard support to the community

December 22, 2020 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) – Partnerships with other local, state and federal agencies enabled the Minnesota National Guard to serve the state through multiple activations throughout 2020, to include responses to flooding in northern Minnesota in April, civil unrest at the end of May and beginning of June, and an ongoing response to… Continue reading Year in Review Part 3 of 3: Partnerships enable Guard support to the community

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Year in Review Part 2 of 3: Modernization proves critical to Minnesota National Guard success

December 15, 2020 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — The Minnesota National Guard has prioritized modernization in order to remain a relevant resource for its state and federal leaders. In 2020, the organization initiated significant upgrades in facilities, equipment, training, and staffing. The Minnesota National Guard needs to “stay in step with the U.S. Army and U.S.… Continue reading Year in Review Part 2 of 3: Modernization proves critical to Minnesota National Guard success

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Task Force Bayonet Soldiers conduct medical evacuation exercise with French Forces in Djibouti

Medics with Task Force Bayonet and airmen stationed at Chabelley Airfield, load a patient into an ambulance during a medical evacuation exercise with Task Force Bayonet, Nov. 19, 2020, Djibouti, Africa. The exercise provided an opportunity for medical personnel with Task Force Bayonet to practice working with the French Forces in Djibouti in the event of a medical emergency.

December 9, 2020 (DJIBOUTI BASE CLUSTER, Djibouti) – Soldiers with Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd Battalion, 135th Infantry Regiment, participated in a joint medical evacuation exercise with French Forces based in Djibouti, Africa, Nov. 19, 2020, in an effort to streamline medical evacuation processes between the two partner nations. The 2nd Battalion, 135th Infantry Regiment… Continue reading Task Force Bayonet Soldiers conduct medical evacuation exercise with French Forces in Djibouti

Year in Review Part 1 of 3: Soldiers and Airmen key to Minnesota National Guard’s state and federal missions

Minnesota Guardsmen conduct no-cost COVID-19 testing for members of the public, Monday, May 25, 2020, at the National Guard armory in Faribault, Minnesota. In partnership with the Minnesota Department of Health, the Minnesota National Guard conducted COVID-19 testing at six locations in Minnesota over a period of three days to any Minnesotan who wanted to be tested. (Minnesota National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Blair Heusdens)

December 8, 2020 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — The Minnesota National Guard has had a busy 2020, supporting federal deployments and an unprecedented number of state activations for COVID-19 response, civil unrest and even flood response. None of these missions would have been possible, however, without the readiness of Minnesota’s citizen-Soldiers and Airmen to respond at… Continue reading Year in Review Part 1 of 3: Soldiers and Airmen key to Minnesota National Guard’s state and federal missions

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Minnesota Guardsmen find meaningful work in long-term care mission

December 7, 2020 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — Soldiers and Airmen from the Minnesota National Guard are experiencing first-hand the impacts that COVID-19 is having on residents in long-term care and the staff who care for them as they find themselves stepping in to fill a staffing void for facilities in need across the state. “I… Continue reading Minnesota Guardsmen find meaningful work in long-term care mission

Family Preparatory Academy Goes Virtual

December 5, 2020 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — Soldiers and families from detachments of the 1-171 General Support Aviation Battalion, based at the Army Aviation Support Facility in St. Cloud, Minnesota, attended the Minnesota National Guard’s first completely-virtual Yellow Ribbon Family Preparatory Academy recently as the unit prepares for an upcoming deployment. As the COVID-19 pandemic… Continue reading Family Preparatory Academy Goes Virtual

34th Red Bull Infantry Division completes move to Arden Hills

November 21, 2020 (ARDEN HILLS, Minnesota) – Soldiers from the Division Headquarters of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division conducted their first weekend of training at the newly-constructed General John W. Vessey Readiness Center in Arden Hills, Minnesota, November 21-22, 2020. “This facility will provide a significant benefit for our soldiers, enabling us to continue… Continue reading 34th Red Bull Infantry Division completes move to Arden Hills

Leblanc family ties

Brig. Gen. Gary Leblanc

November 12, 2020 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) — Service to the community, state and country runs deep in the LeBlanc family. So far, three generations of LeBlanc’s have worked at Camp Ripley fulltime, totaling over 70 years of service to this community. The tradition of serving goes all the way back to 1963 when the oldest… Continue reading Leblanc family ties

Veteran Looks Down the Sights of Legacy and Brotherhood

Vietnam Veteran (Spc.4 )Richard Hokenson interacts with fellow snipers and Soldiers from the Minnesota National Guard's 2nd Combined Arms Battalion - 136th infantry Oct. 10, 2020 on Camp Ripley

November 10, 2020 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) – In March of 1970, Spc.4 Rick Hokenson was a part of a 90-man company that marched out of their firebase in South Vietnam in order to patrol an area known as the “Dog’s Head” near the Cambodian border. Richard Hokenson, of Detroit Lakes, Minnesota, was assigned as a… Continue reading Veteran Looks Down the Sights of Legacy and Brotherhood

148th Fighter Wing, a Family Tradition

November 4, 2020 (DULUTH, Minnesota) — We’ve all heard the phrase “the Guard is a family”.  For Tech. Sgt. Kristianna Konietzko, a Training Technician in the Force Development Office, the phrase is quite literal.  Kristianna Konietzko, a Cloquet High School graduate, is the third-generation of her family to serve at the 148th Fighter Wing, Minnesota Air… Continue reading 148th Fighter Wing, a Family Tradition

Teamwork Makes the Dream Work

U.S. Air Force Airman Madison Chadderdon poses for a photograph after graduating from basic military training in San Antonio, Texas, Oct. 12, 2018. Chadderdon lost 84 pounds in order to make her lifelong dream of joining the Air Force a reality. (Courtesy photo submitted by Senior Airman Madison Chadderdon)

November 2, 2020 (SAINT PAUL, Minnesota) – In 2017, Madison Chadderdon didn’t know what to strive for. At the weight of 252 pounds, she lacked goals, confidence and jumped from job to job. She had considered joining the military since she was a child, but the challenge of losing weight made her question if it… Continue reading Teamwork Makes the Dream Work

Living the dream: Minnesota Guardsman reflects on life as Hispanic American immigrant

Staff Sgt. Francisco Lopez, an 11B infantryman with Delta Company, 2nd Battalion, 135th Infantry Regiment, currently stationed at Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, Sept. 24, 2020. Staff Sgt. Lopez is a Hispanic American immigrant, originally from Caltimacan, a small village in the state of Hidalgo, Mexico.

October 15, 2020 (HORN OF AFRICA) — Francisco Lopez was only 8 years old when he saw his first Soldier. Born and raised in Caltimacan, a small village in the state of Hidalgo, Mexico, he recalled a beautiful Spring day when he saw a Mexican Special Forces Soldier he had seen on several occasions before,… Continue reading Living the dream: Minnesota Guardsman reflects on life as Hispanic American immigrant

Suarez works to move diversity forward for Minnesota National Guard

September 28, 2020 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) – In the months since Lt. Col. Eduardo Suarez took over as the Director of Diversity and Inclusion for the Minnesota National Guard, the organization has been activated multiple times to support local authorities in response to ongoing racial tensions and civil unrest in the Twin Cities metro area.… Continue reading Suarez works to move diversity forward for Minnesota National Guard

An Emerging Frontier: Task Force Bayonet Soldiers train in electronic warfare

September 25, 2020 (CAMP LEMONNIER, DJIBOUTI) – Soldiers with Bravo Company, 2nd Battalion, 135th Infantry Regiment from Minnesota, conducted Unmanned Aircraft Systems and Counter Unmanned Aircraft Systems training Aug. 17-20, here, as part of a training program designed to supplement the training they received during their mobilization at Camp McGregor, New Mexico. Bravo Company is… Continue reading An Emerging Frontier: Task Force Bayonet Soldiers train in electronic warfare

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148th Fighter Wing Conducts Medevac Training

September 24, 2020 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) — Personnel from the Medical Group of the 148th Fighter Wing gathered at Camp Ripley Training Center, Minnesota to conduct field training, September 19-22, 2020. Medical personnel learned about and exercised patient load training alongside Critical Care Flight Paramedics from the 2-211th General Support Aviation Battalion, a St. Cloud-based Minnesota Army… Continue reading 148th Fighter Wing Conducts Medevac Training

Minnesota National Guard commemorates 23rd Annual Bataan Memorial March

September 21, 2020 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) — On September 12, 2020 the 1st Combined Arms Battalion, 194th Armor hosted the 23rd annual Bataan Memorial March in remembrance of all those who were forced to participate in the Bataan Death March and those who lost their lives as a result thereof. This year the event had… Continue reading Minnesota National Guard commemorates 23rd Annual Bataan Memorial March

Red Devils show resolve during Middle East deployment

September 20, 2020 (CAMP BUERHRING, KUWAIT) — The 34th Expeditionary Combat Aviation Brigade (ECAB) assumed authority of the aviation support mission for Operation Inherent Resolve and Operation Spartan Shield Jan. 2, 2020. The ECAB consists of nearly 2,000 members from active duty components, multiple National Guard units across 10 states and additional Coalition service members… Continue reading Red Devils show resolve during Middle East deployment

The Power of Human Connections

September 18, 2020 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — The COVID-19 pandemic this year has required us to physically distance ourselves from others. While good for our physical health, this distance can impact our mental health. “Relationships are imperative to human connections,” said Kristi Charles the Minnesota National Guard State Suicide Prevention Coordinator. “Developing and strengthening those… Continue reading The Power of Human Connections

Simulating Change for Real Results

September 4, 2020 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) – Camp Ripley is host to a broad range of training methods.  From classroom to hands-on to virtual, Camp Ripley provides it all. Among the virtual methods of training lies Camp Ripley’s simulators. Camp Ripley houses a number of simulators throughout post including flight simulators, convoy simulators and battlefield… Continue reading Simulating Change for Real Results

From Ground to the Air – Thirty One Years of Service

September 3, 2020 — Spanning a career of over 30 years, Chief Warrant Officer 5 Jason Wright shares experiences working his way from the ground up – quite literally. Wright began his career as an enlisted Cavalry Scout (19D) with the 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment (ACR) back in 1989. His first deployment experience stands out… Continue reading From Ground to the Air – Thirty One Years of Service

Minnesota National Guard Welcomes New Adjutant General

The Minnesota National Guard welcomes Maj. Gen. Shawn Manke as the 32nd adjutant general of the Minnesota National Guard during a ceremony in St. Paul, Minnesota, August 31, 2020. Manke assumed the responsibilities of adjutant general from Lieutenant General Jon Jensen who recently moved to a new position as Director of the Army National Guard. The adjutant general serves for a term of seven years and is a state employee appointed by the Governor of Minnesota. (Minnesota National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Blair Heusdens)

August 31, 2020 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) – The Minnesota National Guard held an installation ceremony Monday, officially welcoming Maj. Gen. Shawn Manke as the organization’s 32nd adjutant general. “It’s a time for us to reflect as an organization on the past and a time to look toward the future,” said Minnesota Governor Tim Walz. “There… Continue reading Minnesota National Guard Welcomes New Adjutant General

148th Fighter Wing, U.S. Coast Guard Conduct Water Survival and Rescue Training

Pilots and aircrew flight equipment specialists with the 148th Fighter Wing, Minnesota Air National Guard, practice water survival techniques near a U.S. Coast Guard RBM-45628 from Coast Guard Station Duluth, while conducting a water survival and rescue training mission. The 148th Fighter Wing partnered with the U.S. Coast Guard’s 9th District Great Lakes to conduct water survival, search and rescue training in Lake Superior near Duluth, Minnesota on August 25, 2020. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Audra Flanagan)

August 25, 2020 (DULUTH, Minnesota) — The 148th Fighter Wing, Minnesota Air National Guard partnered with the U.S. Coast Guard’s 9th District Great Lakes to conduct water survival and rescue training in Lake Superior near Duluth, Minnesota on August 25, 2020.  Personnel from U.S. Coast Guard Station Duluth, a regional search and rescue first responder on Lake… Continue reading 148th Fighter Wing, U.S. Coast Guard Conduct Water Survival and Rescue Training

The Dubois Family Doubles Down

(Left to right) Pfc. Nicole Dubois stands next to her sister, Spc. Sarah Dubois at their usual lunch spot in front of their 834th Aviation Support Battalion T-Wall on July 29, 2020.

August 21, 2020 (CAMP BUEHRING, KUWAIT) — “I wouldn’t say that military service is a tradition in my family,” said Spc. Sarah Dubois. “But it’s pretty nice having all my siblings serve.” As an airfield management specialist with Alpha Company, 834th Aviation Support Battalion, Sarah is currently deployed with her sister, Pfc. Nicole Dubois, an… Continue reading The Dubois Family Doubles Down

Minnesota National Guard, State Patrol, DNR Continue Training to Respond Together

August 19, 2020 (RICHFIELD, Minnesota) — More than 70 Soldiers with the Minnesota National Guard‘s Montevideo-based 1st Battalion, 151st Field Artillery trained alongside Minnesota State Patrol troopers and conservation officers from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources during a civil disturbance control training exercise in the Twin Cities, August 17, 2020. The exercise, designed to… Continue reading Minnesota National Guard, State Patrol, DNR Continue Training to Respond Together

3,000 Minnesota Soldiers wrap up large-scale military exercise in the Mojave Desert

August 4, 2020 (FORT IRWIN, California) – About 3,000 Minnesota Soldiers are packing rucksacks and duffle bags, as they prepare to make their way back to the land of 10,000 lakes. The Soldiers from the Minnesota National Guard’s 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, just wrapped up a large-scale combat exercise… Continue reading 3,000 Minnesota Soldiers wrap up large-scale military exercise in the Mojave Desert

Life support for Soldiers in the Desert

Daily temperature checks, diligent isolation and quarantined procedures have proved to be effective in stopping the spread of COVID-19 during the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team’s National Training Center rotation at Fort Irwin, California. On July 26, 2020, Spc. Watson at the 204th Medical Company Area Support Brigade Aid Station checks temperatures at sick call.

July 30, 2020 (FORT IRWIN, California) — While the eye of the National Training Center is on the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Division and their 14-day full-scale desert exercise – there is group of nearly 500 additional Minnesota National Guard Soldiers at Fort Irwin, California, supporting them.   “Our main job is… Continue reading Life support for Soldiers in the Desert

Training and Collaboration Develops Exceptional EOD Airmen

An Air National Guard Explosive Ordnance Disposal technician participates in a field training exercise at Camp Ripley Training Center, Minnesota, July 20-24, 2020. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Audra Flanagan)

July 29, 2020 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) — Explosive Ordnance Technicians from the 148th Fighter Wing, Minnesota Air National Guard, 166th Airlift Wing, Delaware Air National Guard and the 177th Fighter Wing, New Jersey Air National Guard gathered at Camp Ripley Training Center, Minnesota, July 20-24, for a field training exercise featuring advanced marksmanship techniques, technical intelligence field analysis,… Continue reading Training and Collaboration Develops Exceptional EOD Airmen

Minnesota National Guard prepares to move vehicles, equipment to California for training exercise

1st Brigade, 34th Infantry Division Soldiers, a part of the Minnesota National Guard, work together to load their vehicles and equipment onto railcars as they prepare for an upcoming exercise out of state.

July 6, 2020 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) – Soldiers from the Minnesota National Guard loaded over 2,000 pieces of military equipment and vehicles onto rail cars at Camp Ripley Training Center headed west in preparation for an upcoming training exercise for the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Division. Soldiers from the 1/34th ABCT, all… Continue reading Minnesota National Guard prepares to move vehicles, equipment to California for training exercise

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Here to Serve

June 25, 2020 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) — Spc. Isaiah Meza is a Soldier, brother and husband. He is a light-wheeled vehicle mechanic with the 204th Medical Company Area Support Group, as well as a full-time federal technician at Camp Ripley, Minnesota, who is preparing to attend a National Training Center rotation with the 1/34th Armored… Continue reading Here to Serve

Minnesota Guard Safety Program focused on soldiers’ health

June 23, 2020 (ROSEMOUNT, Minnesota) — The Minnesota National Guard conducts 80 to 90 occupational health and industrial hygiene inspections of its armories and maintenance facilities each year as mandated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the National Guard Bureau.  Andrea Turner, the State Occupational Health Nurse, and Sgt. Anthony Sparrow, the… Continue reading Minnesota Guard Safety Program focused on soldiers’ health

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Minnesota Guardsmen honored with socially-distanced send-off and steak dinner

Nearly 700 Soldiers from the Minnesota National Guard's 2nd Battalion, 135th Infantry Regiment were honored June 19, 2020, at Camp Ripley prior to deployment to the Horn of Africa. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, Soldiers were quarantined for training and families were unable to attend the ceremony. Serving Our Troops hosted the ceremony and provided meals to the Soldiers and grill boxes for families to participate in the ceremony remotely. (Minnesota National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Blair Heusdens)

June 20, 2020 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) — Soldiers from the Minnesota National Guard’s 2nd Battalion, 135th Infantry Regiment were honored June 19, 2020, at Camp Ripley prior to deployment to the Horn of Africa. “Training for these missions requires strength and perseverance,” Minnesota Governor Tim Walz told the Soldiers remotely via video message. “You’ve done… Continue reading Minnesota Guardsmen honored with socially-distanced send-off and steak dinner

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Food truck vendors impacted by COVID restrictions employed by Minnesota to feed National Guard

June 8, 2020 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — Local food truck companies prepared food for Minnesota National Guard Soldiers and Airmen who were activated to support the cities of Minneapolis, St. Paul and the surrounding communities during civil unrest. They supported multiple locations throughout the metro area. The Minnesota National Guard was struggling to identify food… Continue reading Food truck vendors impacted by COVID restrictions employed by Minnesota to feed National Guard

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34th Infantry Division to Regain an Artillery Headquarters

151st Field Artillery training prior to WW1.

May 23, 2020 (ROSEMOUNT, Minnesota) — The Director of the Army National Guard, Lt. Gen. Daniel R. Hokanson, announced on April 29 the newest Division Artillery (DIVARTY) headquarters will be assigned to the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division. Re-activation for the 34th DIVARTY is scheduled for the fall of 2022. Minnesota was not the only… Continue reading 34th Infantry Division to Regain an Artillery Headquarters

Safety Day Event Promotes Teamwork Even In Isolation

For their support of Safety day on Camp Ripley May 20, 2020 Officer Brandon McGaw of the Minnesota DNR, Sgt. Neil Dickenson of the Minnesota State Patrol and Officer John Hughes of Camp Ripley Security receive a certificate of appreciation from Maj. Arron Krenz, Director of Public Safety on Camp Ripley.

May 22, 2020 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) – Minnesota National Guard personnel and employees of Camp Ripley took part in an annual Safety Day event May 20, 2020, demonstrating the commitment to overall health and safety of the workforce. This year, amid restriction due to the COVID-19 pandemic, National Guard members as well as state and… Continue reading Safety Day Event Promotes Teamwork Even In Isolation

A Century Ago: 1918 Flu Took Red Bulls Before the Fight

Influenza victims crowd into an emergency hospital near Fort Riley, Kansas in this 1918 file photo. The 1918 Spanish flu pandemic killed at least 20 million people worldwide and officials say that if the next pandemic resemblers the birdlike 1918 Spanish flu, to 1.9 million Americans could die. (AP Photo/National Museum of Health)

May 21, 2020 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — As the world battles the impact of the COVID-19 virus, a century ago a different pandemic spread globally, impacting Minnesota Soldiers who were preparing to go to war. Some say it started in Kansas. Infected farm boys became soldiers. The virus easily spread in the close quarters of… Continue reading A Century Ago: 1918 Flu Took Red Bulls Before the Fight

Minnesota Guardsman, first responder, remains vigilant amid COVID-19 pandemic

May 20, 2020 (MINNEAPOLIS) — As COVID-19 continues to make its presence felt throughout the state, some traditional Minnesota National Guard members are serving on the medical frontlines. Sgt. David Reker of the 204th Area Support Medical Company is one of those soldiers. As a medical instrument technician in the cardiology department at the Minneapolis… Continue reading Minnesota Guardsman, first responder, remains vigilant amid COVID-19 pandemic

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Camp Ripley welcomes customers, promotes COVID-19 safety measures

While practicing social distancing, Soldiers of the Minnesota National Guard arrive on Camp Ripley May 15, 2020 to conduct training in preparation for an upcoming rotation at the national training center in Ft. Irwin Califonia

May 19, 2020 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) – During the past few months of the COVID-19 pandemic it may have appeared that Camp Ripley’s 53,000-acre National Guard training facility was closed for business, the reality is that department teams and staff have been working constantly to help customers arrange their schedules, training plans and mission requirements… Continue reading Camp Ripley welcomes customers, promotes COVID-19 safety measures

Minnesota Guardsman welcomes son into officer ranks

May 15, 2020 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — Brig. Gen. Shawn Manke, Assistant Division Commander of Operations for the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, recently had the opportunity to participate in the commissioning ceremony of his son, Lucas, which was held virtually in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In these times of socially-distanced meetings, workplaces and… Continue reading Minnesota Guardsman welcomes son into officer ranks

Minnesota Guardsmen continue to prepare for deployment amid COVID-19 restrictions

Soldiers with the Minnesota National Guard’s 2nd Battalion, 135th Infantry Regiment prepare for an upcoming deployment during a Soldier Readiness Process (SRP) event April 24, 2020 at the Cottage Grove Armory. About 700 Soldiers are expected to deploy to the Horn of Africa this summer in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. They will serve as part of a Task Force to improve security posture at U.S. installations and forward operating bases in the region, while maintaining a rapidly deployable force prepared to respond to crisis. The 2nd Battalion, 135th Infantry, is a Minnesota National Guard battalion headquartered in Mankato. The 2-135 provides the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division with a trained and ready combat force.

April 28, 2020 (MANKATO, Minnesota) — Approximately 700 Soldiers from the Minnesota National Guard’s Mankato-based 2nd Battalion, 135th Infantry are training and preparing for deployment to the Horn of Africa later this summer. “The health and well-being of each of our soldiers and their families is very important,” said Lt. Col. Chip Rankin, commander of… Continue reading Minnesota Guardsmen continue to prepare for deployment amid COVID-19 restrictions

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Minnesota Army National Guard continues to recruit Soldiers

April 24, 2020 (MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota) — The Minnesota Army National Guard is still recruiting, just in a different way. Like many organizations and businesses, the Minnesota National Guard has had to adapt during the global pandemic. We are committed to remaining a strong and ready force, and that means we are still looking for qualified… Continue reading Minnesota Army National Guard continues to recruit Soldiers

Once in the Service, Always Ready to Serve

April 21, 2020 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — While the fight against COVID-19 requires each individual to do their part by social distancing and taking other precautionary measures, it also takes unwavering leadership when faced with difficult decisions. This is something that sets the state of Minnesota apart from the rest. Some of our most engaged… Continue reading Once in the Service, Always Ready to Serve

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148th Fighter Wing Airmen graduate basic training amid COVID-19 pandemic

U.S. Air Force basic military graduation is held Apr. 9, 2020, at the 321st Training Squadron’s Airman Training Complex on Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas. Due to current world events, the graduation ceremonies will be closed to the public until further notice for safety and security of the newly accessioned Airmen and their family members due to coronavirus (COVID-19).

April 20, 2020 (DULUTH, Minnesota) — On April 9, 2020, 1400 trainees graduated from Air Force Basic Military Training (BMT) at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas; all wearing masks amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.  Of the 1400, three were Bulldogs of the 148th Fighter Wing. Airman 1st Class David Cornelius, Airman 1st Class Ivy Grochowski, and Airman 1st Class Sebastian… Continue reading 148th Fighter Wing Airmen graduate basic training amid COVID-19 pandemic

Duluth Airmen serves in critical role as victim advocate

Senior Master Sgt. Christopher McLeod is a victim advocate at the 148th Fighter Wing in Duluth, Minnesota.

April 17, 2020 (DULUTH, Minnesota) — In 2011, an Airmen ten years into his career saw a new opportunity where he could serve in a position that would help protect fellow service members from harm every day. He’d be able to help individuals one-on-one and train his unit at the same time.             “As a… Continue reading Duluth Airmen serves in critical role as victim advocate

Minnesota National Guard supports Red River flooding

A Soldier with 2nd Combined Arms Battalion, 136th Infantry “Bearcats” based out of Moorhead, Minnesota, is served an Easter dinner on April 12, 2020, while on state active duty to support the city of Oslo, Minnesota, and Marshall County with seasonal flooding. The approximately 20 Soldiers arrived to Oslo on April 8. (Minnesota National Guard photo by Sgt. Sebastian Nemec)

April 13, 2020 (OSLO, Minnesota) — About 20 Soldiers with the 2nd Combined Arms Battalion, 136th Infantry “Bearcats” based out of Moorhead, Minnesota, supported the city of Oslo, Minnesota, over Easter for the second year in a row. The Red River’s water levels have flooded roadways into the city. Minnesota Governor Tim Walz issued an… Continue reading Minnesota National Guard supports Red River flooding

148th Fighter Wing returns from NORAD-tasked Operation NOBLE EAGLE Deployment

A pilot prepares for take-off in a Block 50 F-16CM Fighting Falcon while deployed in support of a NORAD tasked Operation NOBLE EAGLE mission. NORAD conducts aerospace warning, aerospace control and maritime warning in the defense of North America. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Tom Krob)

March 31, 2020 (DULUTH, Minnesota) — Airmen from the Duluth-based 148th Fighter Wing, Minnesota Air National Guard, returned home last week after completing a 90-day NORAD-tasked Operation NOBLE EAGLE mission servicing the continental United States. “The 148th provided robust air-defense capabilities,” said Canadian Maj. Gen. Derek Joyce, deputy commander, Continental U.S. North American Aerospace Defense… Continue reading 148th Fighter Wing returns from NORAD-tasked Operation NOBLE EAGLE Deployment

Badly-Needed Blood Drive Finds Host At Camp Ripley

March 26, 2020 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) – During difficult times, the American Red Cross has literally been the lifeblood that has come to the aid of people everywhere. Their mission statement reads: The American Red Cross prevents and alleviates human suffering in the face of emergencies by mobilizing the power of volunteers and the generosity… Continue reading Badly-Needed Blood Drive Finds Host At Camp Ripley

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Minnesota Guardsman named inspector general civilian of the year

Heidi Savre, assistant inspector general for the Minnesota National Guard, was named Inspector General Civilian of the Year in the category of GS 9-11. Savre started out as a dual status technicain in the Minnesota National Guard inspector general office in November of 2010. (Minnesota National Guard photo by Sgt. Robert Brown)

March 25, 2020 (ST. PAUL, Minn.) — The Department of the Army recently named Heidi Savre, assistant inspector general for the Minnesota National Guard, as Inspector General Civilian of the Year in the category of GS 9-11. “Heidi has a great personality that compels people to like her,” said Col. Daniel Heape, the state inspector… Continue reading Minnesota Guardsman named inspector general civilian of the year

Sgt. Shanice Buckhalton: To serve her country and community

Sgt. Shanice Buckhalton is currently deployed to the Middle East as an administration non-commissioned officer with the Headquarters Support Company, 834th Aviation Support Battalion, 34th Expeditionary Combat Aviation Brigade.

February 20, 2020 (KUWAIT) – As an administration non-commissioned officer for the Headquarters Support Company, 834th Aviation Support Battalion, Sgt. Shanice Buckhalton has a long list of goals to accomplish during her first deployment. While completing her Bachelor’s degree in exercise science from Southwest Minnesota State University and fulfilling the 100 volunteer hours she needs… Continue reading Sgt. Shanice Buckhalton: To serve her country and community

Siblings Ski and Serve Together in Minnesota National Guard

Siena (left) and Jakob (right) shoot during a biathlon competition in Utah. Photo provided by Spc. Jakob Ellingson

February 20, 2020 (ST PAUL, Minnesota) – From Belarus to Chile to Northern Italy, biathletes and siblings Siena and Jakob Ellingson have been able to compete at high levels while serving in the Minnesota National Guard as specialists and motor transportation operators with the 114th Transportation Company. Despite not learning how to ski until age… Continue reading Siblings Ski and Serve Together in Minnesota National Guard

Minnesota Guardsman brings Haitian culture to Guard service

Staff Sgt. Daphnee Pierre, a culinary management NCO with the Stillwater-based 34th Military Police Company, joined the Minnesota National Guard in 2009 as a financial management technician. Born and raised in Haiti, Pierre lived in New York with her extended family before coming to Minnesota. (Minnesota National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Blair Heusdens)

February 17, 2020 (STILLWATER, Minnesota) — Staff Sgt. Daphnee Pierre, a culinary management NCO with the Stillwater-based 34th Military Police Company, joined the Minnesota National Guard in 2009 as a financial management technician. Born and raised in Haiti, Pierre lived in New York with her extended family before coming to Minnesota. She has several extended… Continue reading Minnesota Guardsman brings Haitian culture to Guard service

Accelerated officer school benefits Guard, proves to be good option for some candidates

L-R: Officer Candidate Landon Foy, Ill., OC Paul Frankl, Ore., OC Phillip Bettis, Ind., and OC Damien Cole, Ill., check each others points for accuracy during night land navigation at Fort Meade, S.D., July 19, 2012. Officer candidates worked as a team on the first night of land navigation and will work individually for a passing grade the second night.

February 7, 2020 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — The most significant difference between the accelerated 501 Officer Candidate School and other OCS training is the pace. The students must accomplish the same tasks to the same standard but at a much faster rate. Where state OCS programs take 14 months, and Federal OCS takes 12 weeks,… Continue reading Accelerated officer school benefits Guard, proves to be good option for some candidates

Civil Support, a Unified Team

Two members of the 55th Civil Support Team based out of St. Paul, Minnesota, walk down a tunnel at Allianz Field in St. Paul, Minnesota, as part of a training exercise on Jan. 16, 2020. The 55th CST trained with the St. Paul Fire Department to maintain readiness between the agencies. (Minnesota National Guard photo by Sgt. Sebastian Nemec)

February 3, 2020 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) — It’s no secret that the National Guard is always ready to respond to local and regional emergencies such as domestic emergencies and natural disasters. Soldiers and Airmen, ready to don their uniforms at a moment’s notice and pause their civilian lives to march toward any challenge before them.… Continue reading Civil Support, a Unified Team

The 34th Infantry Division Bids Farewell to a Key Leader, Trainer

COL (Ret) John Kreye teaches a course to the deploying Staff Officers and Non-Commissioned Officers of 2-147 on the steps of the Military Decision Making Process. The Staff applied their knowledge to a fictional scenario created by COL Kreye that will prepare them to plan similar missions in Kuwait later this year. (Photo by Spc. Riley Elmore)

January 30, 2020 (ROSEMOUNT, Minnesota) — Retired Col. John R. Kreye had two distinguished careers in the Minnesota National Guard. He rose from the enlisted ranks to command at the platoon, battery, battalion, and brigade-levels. His military career culminated as the Chief of Staff for Task Force Falcon and Multi-national BDE East in Kosovo. Based… Continue reading The 34th Infantry Division Bids Farewell to a Key Leader, Trainer

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Minnesota National Guard property and fiscal office works behind the scenes to ensure fiscal responsibility

January 23, 2020 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) — In the Minnesota National Guard, a group of highly-skilled personnel work to manage the government funds and property that ensure Soldiers and Airmen are trained and able to respond to federal and state missions. “In an era where all the transactions are digital, it’s easy for people to… Continue reading Minnesota National Guard property and fiscal office works behind the scenes to ensure fiscal responsibility

Funeral services for PV2 Conor McGurran

Funeral and visitation arrangements for PV2 Conor McGurran are as follows: Visitation: Sunday, January 19, 2020, 3:00-5:00 p.m. Washburn-McReavy Nokomis Park Chapel, 1838 East Minnehaha Parkway, Minneapoli, MN  (612) 721-1651 Interment: Monday, January 20, 2020, 9:00 a.m. Fort Snelling National Cemetery, 7601 34th Avenue, South Minneapolis, MN Memorial Mass of Christian Burial: Monday, January 20,… Continue reading Funeral services for PV2 Conor McGurran

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Minnesota Guardsman honors family’s military history during promotion

Ford Elliott promotes his granddaughter Katie Blackwell to the rank of sergeant major, January 12, 2020, in Champlin, Minnesota. Blackwell is the operations sergeant major for the Minnesota National Guard's 84th Troop Command. Blackwell's grandfather started his military career in the Minnesota National Guard's 682nd Engineer Battalion prior to serving in Korea and had the opportunity to promote his granddaughter on his 90th birthday. (Minnesota National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Blair Heusdens)

January 15, 2020 (CHAMPLIN, Minnesota) — Sgt. Maj. Katie Blackwell’s brother, uncles, grandfather and great grandfather served in the military. Her family’s military legacy goes back to the American Revolution. On January 12, 2020, Blackwell honored that legacy by having her grandfather, Ford Elliott, help to promote her to the rank of sergeant major on… Continue reading Minnesota Guardsman honors family’s military history during promotion

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Accepting Nominations for Camp Ripley’s 2020 Court of Honor

Suspense 1April2020 The Camp Ripley Memorialization Board is now accepting nominations for possible candidates to be inducted into the 2020 Minnesota Army National Guard Court of Honor Induction Program at Camp Ripley, MN.  Please reference the attached documents: –Nomination Form (dtd 30 OCT 19) –Memorialization Regulation MNGR 1-33 (dtd 30 OCT 19) –History of the… Continue reading Accepting Nominations for Camp Ripley’s 2020 Court of Honor

Minnesota National Guard recognizes Airmen of the Year

Chief Master Sgt. Mark Rukavina, Minnesota State Command Chief; Master Sgt. Richard Kaufman, Master Sgt Chris Armstrong, Tech Sgt. George Wexler, Senior Airmen Jeffrey Fouts and Col. Brian Mandt, Vice Chief of Staff Minnesota Air National Guard pose for a group photo on Jan. 10, 2020 right after a ceremony in Duluth, Minn. Kaufman, Armstrong, Wexler and Fouts were named the 2020 Airmen of the Year for the state of Minnesota based on 2019 accomplishments. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Audra Flanagan)

January 14, 2020 (DULUTH, Minnesota) — A small ceremony held at the 148th Fighter Wing, Duluth, Minnesota acknowledged this year’s Outstanding Airmen of the year statewide on Friday, Jan.11, 2020. Members of the 133rd Airlift Wing and 148th Fighter Wing gathered in support of their 2020 Outstanding Airman of Year nominees. Each wing selected candidates… Continue reading Minnesota National Guard recognizes Airmen of the Year

Stillwater Honors WWII Last Man

STILLWATER, Minnesota – Stillwater’s newest Army recruit honored Stillwater’s WWII Last Man in a ceremony at the Stillwater National Guard Armory Monday, Nov. 4, 2019. The final commemorative star was ceremoniously applied to the Last Man plaque by Pvt. Coty Ross, 17, the newest Army National Guard recruit to serve in the Stillwater armory. He recently returned from US Army Basic Training and will go to Advanced Individual Training next summer after graduating high school. Stillwater’s Last Man was Pvt. 1st Class Jean L. DeCurtins who passed away Aug. 14, 2019 at the age of 100. He was awarded 3 Bronze Stars and 2 Purple Hearts for his service in Africa and Italy during WWII. He was in Stillwater’s D Company, 135th Infantry Regiment, 34th Infantry Division. Prior to his death he was the last man in Stillwater’s “A and D Last Man Club” which was comprised of soldiers from A and D Companies who trained together at the Stillwater Armory as part of the Minnesota National Guard and were activated together for service in World War II. DeCurtins was the last man from the World War II group.

November 4, 2019 (STILLWATER, Minnesota) – Stillwater’s newest Army recruit honored Stillwater’s WWII Last Man in a ceremony at the Stillwater National Guard Armory Monday, Nov. 4, 2019. The final commemorative star was ceremoniously applied to the Last Man plaque by Pvt. Coty Ross, 17, the newest Army National Guard recruit to serve in the… Continue reading Stillwater Honors WWII Last Man

34th Red Bull Infantry Division Welcomes New Command Team

Brig. Gen. Mike Wickman assumes command of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division during a combined Change of Command and Responsibility Ceremony held on Nov. 3, 2019 at the Rosemount National Guard Armory. Many former and retired Division commanders and command sergeants major attended the ceremony along side current Soldiers and the family and friends of both outgoing and incoming command teams.

November 3, 2019 (ROSEMOUNT, Minnesota) — The Minnesota National Guard’s 34th Red Bull Infantry Division welcomed a new command team during a combined Change of Command and Responsibility Ceremony, Nov. 3, 2019, at the Rosemount National Guard Armory. Many former and retired division commanders and command sergeants major attended the ceremony alongside current soldiers and… Continue reading 34th Red Bull Infantry Division Welcomes New Command Team

34th Infantry Division Association hosts 72nd annual Division Reunion

The 34th Infantry Division conducted its 72nd Annual Reunion Oct. 4-5 2019. The Reunion was hosted by the Commander’s Own Chapter of the 34th Infantry Division Association at Camp Ripley, Minnesota. On Friday Red Bulls and their families met at Valhalla for dinner and festivities. On Saturday Camp Ripley conducted a tour of their Environmental Office and driving tours of the training and range facilities. The Division Historian briefed the members on the Division’s recent deployment to Kuwait to command Task Force Spartan. This was followed by a tour of the Minnesota Military Museum and the Division Association business meeting. The final event was a banquet dinner with guest speaker Andy Biggio.

Oct. 17, 2019 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) — The 34th Infantry Division’s 72nd Annual Reunion was conducted Oct. 4-5, 2019. This two-day event was hosted by the Commander’s Own Chapter of the 34th Infantry Division Association at Camp Ripley, Minnesota. On Friday, Red Bulls and their families met at Valhalla for dinner and refreshments. This reception… Continue reading 34th Infantry Division Association hosts 72nd annual Division Reunion

Eight Inducted into Court of Honor at Camp Ripley

Maj. Gen. (Ret.) Elandson, Court of Honor board member, and Command Sergeant Major Erickson unviel the Court of Honor monument near the Military Museum on Camp Ripley on October 6th, 2019

October 10, 2019 (CAMP RIPLEY, Minnesota) – On Oct. 6, 2019 eight members of the Minnesota National Guard were honored for their military service as they were inducted into Camp Ripley’s Court of Honor. Each year, prior service military personnel are nominated and considered for the Court of Honor induction on the basis of heroism… Continue reading Eight Inducted into Court of Honor at Camp Ripley

Minnesota National Guard, State Agencies Partner for Cyber Security Planning

The National Governor’s Association held a conference on the subject of cybersecurity, specifically with regard to upcoming political elections at the Minnesota capitol building from 1-2 October, 2019. Minnesota National Guard members participated to facilitate discussions on how the 177th Cyber Protection Team could work with other state agencies to prevent or respond to cyber attacks. (Photo by Sgt. Linsey Williams)

October 9, 2019 (ST. PAUL, Minnesota) -“I’d love to have the Guard kick it off.” Maggie Brunner, program director for cybersecurity at the National Governor’s Association (NGA) Center for Best Practices, opened the second round of discussions of a two-day conference by inviting members of the Minnesota National Guard to share their capabilities as state,… Continue reading Minnesota National Guard, State Agencies Partner for Cyber Security Planning